Two Best Cruise Ships in the World Are Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity, Say Conde Nast Traveler Readers

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 7 /PRNewswire/ — The well-traveled readers of Conde Nast Traveler have cast their votes and awarded Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity with the coveted No. 1 and No. 2 spots in the magazine’s 6th annual “Best Cruise Ships in the World” readers’ poll. Crystal Serenity’s score of 96.2 and Crystal Symphony’s rating of 95.0 put the two ultra-luxury vessels at the top of all 80 cruise ships recognized in the magazine’s February 2006 issue on newsstands now.

While the poll divides ships into categories of large, medium and small — with Crystal ships considered medium-size — the two Crystal ships earned the highest scores of any ship in all three categories. Crystal Serenity is the highest rated medium-size ship for Crew/Service, Itineraries, Food & Dining and Design & Layout. Crystal Symphony placed a close second in virtually all categories, and rated highest of medium-size ships for Activities/Excursions.

“To receive this recognition from the very people who purchase our vacations is a testament to the consistency and innovation of the Crystal product, as well as the dedication, creativity and enthusiasm of our staff,” says Crystal Cruises President Gregg L. Michel. “We are so pleased to see that our company-wide commitment to the hallmarks of Crystal — space, quality, service and choices — has been honored with such prestigious accolades from the world’s most savvy travelers.”

Conde Nast Traveler subscribers were asked to rate 230 cruise ships on a 100 point scale. Scores are percentages based on the “excellent” and “very good” votes from the readers in the categories of Itineraries, Crew/Service, Food/Dining, Cabins/Design, and Events/Activities. For the survey, the magazine defines medium-size ships as those carrying between 500 and 1,500 passengers. A complete list of the “Best Cruise Ships in the World” appears in the February 2006 issue.

Crystal invests a significant amount of time and resources to evolving the Crystal experience. Shipboard and shoreside, employees embrace the company’s Six-Star Crystal Basics, a multi-point credo for anticipating and fulfilling guests’ needs. The line’s culinary program is renowned for its new and progressive concepts, including alliances with Nobu Matsuhisa, and its innovative Best Young Chefs of Italy program with long-time partner Piero Selvaggio. Crystal’s Wine & Food Festival, now in its tenth year, attracts some of the most respected names in the culinary world.

The Crystal Difference

Aboard the ultra-luxurious ships of Crystal Cruises, refined elegance meets casual simplicity. With an emphasis on innovative product differentiation, the renowned Crystal experience is distinguished by classic service, abundant space, extensive choices, and quality, providing worldwide vacations that bridge the best of land and sea.

The 940-guest, 50,000-ton Crystal Symphony and the 1,080-guest, 68,000-ton Crystal Serenity are among the most spacious and luxurious vessels cruising in the luxury market. Their unique size allows for smooth sailing and a wide range of innovative facilities, generous amenities and elegant accommodations. Their features include grand lounges, a lavish spa outfitted in accordance with the principles of Feng Shui, extensive fitness facilities, complimentary golf, yoga and Pilates instruction, Asian and Italian specialty restaurants, the stimulating Creative Learning Institute and the popular Computer University@Sea(R), offering 24-hour e-mail and internet access, as well as hands-on instruction. Other distinguishing features include expansive decks, two pools, award-winning cuisine and entertainment, and exquisitely appointed staterooms, more than half of which offer private verandahs.

For additional information, please contact a travel agent or call 888-799-4625. Visit the luxury line’s website at

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